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Increase in number of films going through cuts to become TV friendly

MUMBAI: There has been a steady increase in the number of films that have gone through the Central Board of Film Certification (CBFC) cut to make them suitable for television viewing.

According to a report in The Times of India, the number of films that were re-examined and given U/A certificate went up to 284 in 2014. In 2013 and 2012, 276 and 249 films with ‘adult’ (A) certification were re-examined and given U/A certificate.

About 1,400 films have been certified by the Censor Board since January this year. Out of this, 189 adult films were given U/A certificate.

A film requires U/A certificate to be aired on cable television. There is nothing in the Cinematograph Act, 1952 or the CBFC guidelines regarding re-certification, yet it is a “facility” provided to producers since the early 1990s, the report said.

The matter of adult certification became a hotly debated issue with the CBFC under its new chief Pahlaj Nihalani asking film makers to remove words like lesbian, Bombay and saala, if they wanted a U/A certification.

In response to an RTI plea by Pune-based activist Vihar Durve, the CBFC said 172 films labeled ‘A’ had been re-certified between October 2012 and March 2015 as ‘U/A’ without following set procedure.

Further, another 166 films initially classified ‘U/A’ had been reclassified as ‘U’ for unrestricted viewing, hinting that these films may have been allowed to jump the queue, alleging that their speedy clearance suggests “favouritism” towards select producers, the report added.